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Guaranteed Availability Initiative Aims to Simplify Inventory Management

Mar 7, 2010 by Thornton Brothers  | 


Thornton Brothers, an Athens-based supplier of paper, packaging, safety, and janitorial supplies, has introduced a new guaranteed availability initiative, G.A.IN., to streamline customer supply processes.

G.A.IN. is a replenishment system that delivers the products businesses require to operate in smaller quantities at a more frequent rate. Its principle deliverables are guaranteed product availability, hassle-free inventory replenishment, reduced inventory volume, and lower risk of inventory damage, theft or obsolescence, resulting in increased cash flow for the customer.

The Thornton Brothers team developed G.A.IN. in response to customer concerns about supply fulfillment, many of which stem from the common industry practices of volume discounts, order minimums, unreliable delivery, and product substitution. These practices force customers to adhere to certain behaviors such as ordering large quantities or paying a premium for small orders, requiring companies to keep unnecessary inventory levels that can lead to theft and damage as well as affect cash flow. G.A.IN. was designed as a way to eliminate these barriers, providing more client freedom and flexibility, while enhancing capital preservation.

“We have seen great success integrating G.A.IN. into our customers’ ordering process,” said Thornton Brothers President Clay Gilbert. “In this time of increased pressures to keep organizations lean and do more with less, our customers have found it to be an efficient system, saving them time and money.”

According to Gilbert, G.A.IN. is tailored to each customer and can be implemented with individual items or as a comprehensive solution with the entire Thornton Brothers product line.

A specialized G.A.IN. implementation team that consists of the Supply Chain Manager, client-specific salesperson, delivery technician, and customer service team, works with each client to ensure a smooth transition. On-site improvement audits at 30, 60 and 90 days allow for continuous improvement of the system.

“We are very pleased with the results from our participation in the G.A.IN. program,” said Thornton Brothers customer Janice Partain with Hartwell, Georgia based Cobb-Vantress, Inc. “The weekly inventory service has proved to be very beneficial to our company by allowing us to stock much less inventory in our supply room but still be able to meet the demand for sanitation supplies as needed.“

G.A.IN. works through Thornton Brothers’ automated inventory control system that communicates customer inventory data on a regular, recurring basis, and can eliminate the necessity for customer ordering. Thornton Brothers monitors and tracks the data to determine optimum inventory levels and seamlessly maintains supply. In addition, Thornton Brothers pays the customer a penalty any time a product is not available using the G.A.IN. system.

“G.A.IN. has proven to be effective because it introduces a pull system into a traditionally push-oriented supply chain,” Gilbert said. “We are making strides against the traditional industry practices that have inhibited customers for many years.”

For more than 70 years, Thornton Brothers has provided innovative solutions in the paper, packaging, safety, and janitorial supply industry including product and equipment supply and service, facility design and maintenance, consulting, and inventory management service. Its expert staff provides customers with a balanced mix of cost-effective products and sound advice to keep facilities in optimal condition and employees safe and healthy. Thornton Brothers serves the Southeast United States.

For more information about Thornton Brothers and its new Guaranteed Availability Initiative, G.A.IN., visit

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